Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors

Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors

Joyce Sidman
Illustrator:  Pamela Zagarenski 
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 6 and up
Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 2009   ISBN: 978-0547014944

Nature is full of colors, and if you take the time to look around, you will come to appreciate the bright reds, yellows, blues, and purples around you. In this gorgeous image-filled picture book, Joyce Sidman explores the changing seasons in terms of the colors that we can explore with all of our senses.

She begins with spring, when red birds sing as they perch in the treetops “each note dropping / like a cherry / into my ear.” This is the time when pansies “beam at each other / with bright velvet faces” that are yellow and purple.

In summer, the heat of yellow radiates off everything. Tiny hummingbirds with red throats “darts, jags, / hovers” in the garden. In the evenings, the shadows creep across the land so slowly that one barely notices they are there until everything is tinged with purple.

In this fabulous book, Joyce Sidman’s incredibly powerful poems are perfectly paired with Pamela Zagarenski’s lovely multimedia artwork. Joyce shows us how colors can be smelled, touched, and heard as well as seen. She gives us a sensory journey that we will be happy to come back to again and again as the seasons unfold around us.

Readers of all ages will love this award-winning book.